Graphic: New warren medical centre
The Royal Flying Doctor Service has increased its commitment to primary healthcare in regional Australia by saving two GP clinics at Gilgandra and Warren from closure.
The future of the two medical practices had been in doubt after the previous owners, the charity Rural and Remote Medical Services (RARMS) had announced they were unable to continue due to high operating costs.
Working in partnership with RARMS and Warren and Gilgandra Shire Councils, the Flying Doctor was able to finalise negotiations and take over the service in mid-December.
“It was very important that the people of Warren and Gilgandra were able to have certainty around their GP Clinics and that is why we moved to take over both,” RFDS General Manager Health Service Jenny Beach said.
“We’re thankful to RARMS and Warren and Gilgandra Councils for working productively to ensure the clinic’s future.
“These are challenging times for all regional health providers as we face a shortage of medical professionals and rising costs in all areas but our commitment is to deliver healthcare where others aren’t able. However, without these clinics the people of Warren and Gilgandra would have to travel out of town to see a doctor so we are working to ensure they can operate in a sustainable way.”
Combined, the two practices employ 16 local people and provide healthcare to more than 8,400 patients. The Flying Doctor already had a presence in both towns, having supplied Mental Health and Alcohol and Other Drugs services for five years.
We are grateful to have supporters such as you, who understand the importance of people in regional and remote communities having access to high-quality healthcare. Without your support, we wouldn’t be able to provide primary healthcare including general practitioner consultations, dental and mental health services. Thank you.